Security & Strategic Review - January 2022

BARBADOS: Mottley calls early election

On 27 December, Prime Minister Mia Mottley surprised the nation by calling an election for 19 January, 18 months ahead of schedule. It was not as if she was finding it hard to govern having achieved a 30-0 clean sweep over the-then ruling Democratic Labour Party (DLP) in May 2018. Nevertheless, she claimed in her 27 December broadcast to the nation that the country was excessively divided after becoming a republic on 30 November and that there was a need for the country to “unite around a common cause, a single government, and a single leader”. It seemed an unconvincing justification for an early rush to the polls, particularly given the continuing difficulties with the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic and the first appearance of the Omicron variant.  Hard-headed electoral calculation seemed to many to be a more plausible explanation.

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